Thursday, August 29, 2019

ALL THE COLORS OF THE RAIN


I read a lot of novels in verse.  My favorites are character-driven stories with a lot of emotion like the one I just finished reading,  THE COLORS OF THE RAIN by R.L.Toalson.  It is everything I hoped it would be, heartbreaking, hopeful, and unforgettable. I didn’t want the story to end because I felt so connected to the main character's authentic and powerful voice. I don’t want to give too much of the story away, so I’ll just share just a bit of the blurb inside the book jacket.  






Ten-year-old Paulie Sanders hates his name because it also belonged to his daddy, who killed a man and crashed a car. With Mama unable to cope, Paulie and his sister, Charlie, move in with Aunt Bee and try to make a fresh start.  But it's 1972 and their new school puts them right in the middle of the Houston School District's war on desegregation. 

Here is an excerpt from the first poem:

RAIN

Most nights
I sleep just fine
because most nights
it doesn't rain.

The last time it rained like this
we drove past that curve
Gran always called dangerous
and saw lights flashing red and blue
and people walking around
and a body covered
with a white sheet
that glowed in the dark.

Mama didn't slow down long enough
to look at the twisted car.
It was too dark to see, anyhow.
We didn't know who was
under the sheet, but Mama said
a prayer for their family
as we drove on by.

-R.L Toalson

Doesn't that just grab your heart and make you want to know more?  You can read a few more poems from the beginning of the book here.

Go here to read an interview with R.L.Toalson, and be sure to watch this inspiring video where the author shares her writing process.




I'm already looking forward to reading more from this very talented writer.  I really hope she writes a sequel to THE COLORS OF THE RAIN because I want to know more about the next chapter in Paulie's life.

A special thank you to Kat for hosting this week's Poetry Friday on her blog Kathryn Apel.

16 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing this. I always like to hear other creative's process for creation. The poem example is really great. I read that and felt like I've had that experience (not seeing the body).

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    1. Tim, hearing another writer's process is something I like too! Thank you for your comment.

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  2. Linda, you got me hooked. Thanks for the enticing introduction to this new-to-me novel in verse. I enjoyed the links you posted, too.

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    1. Carol, let me know what you think after you read it. I have a feeling you will love it!

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  3. It's a title new to me, Linda, and I'm sure I'll find it! Thanks so much for sharing. What a thing for a child to overcome!

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    1. Linda, the entire story is so emotional. I hope you get a chance to read it!

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  4. I've read this! I think I may have stumbled upon it on BorrowBox? And yes, it was a wonderful read. Thank-you for bringing it back to mind! (I have emailed UQP to see how best you could access the two VNs I shared on my blog. I know it is possible (I think they'd be digital copies?) but can't remember how.)

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  5. Thanks for sharing this one. It's new to me but sounds like one I would love.

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    1. If you read it, let me know what you think! : )

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  6. This sounds really good! That poem does draw me right in. And, I love the title. Thanks for the introduction. I'll be keeping an eye out for this one.

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    1. Linda, I think it's one of the best novels in verse I've read. After you read it, let me know what you think. : )

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  7. Another book for my to-read pile. Thank you for introducing us to this book and sharing a few bits, and yes, I definitely want to read more!

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  8. I really think you'll like it!

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  9. Thank you for introducing this novel-in-verse, Linda. It sounds like a must-read!

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  10. It's always great to have a recommendation for a book, and this one sounds like one I'd like. I do like verse novels and admire the special talent it takes to write one!

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